Don't count out Iowa State just yet for the Big 12 title.
The Cyclones stopped No. 8 Oklahoma State on a fourth down with just over a minute remaining to hang on for a 24-21 win. OSU ran a quick pass outside to Brennan Presley and he was deemed down about three inches or so from the first down.
Just short for Oklahoma State 😬 pic.twitter.com/l2kW97h3uh
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 23, 2021
The spot was reviewed but there was no good angle that showed if Presley was on top of a teammate when he first went down and where the ball was in relation to the 40-yard line.
Oklahoma State (6-1) got the ball back with three minutes left and one timeout needing a field goal to tie. The Cowboys got inside Iowa State territory, but couldn’t get into field goal range to potentially send the game into overtime.
The game-winning score came courtesy of ISU running back Breece Hall. He scored in his 19th consecutive game when he ran for a four-yard TD with 5:29 to go and give Iowa State (5-2) its second lead of the game. The Cyclones never led until there were less than three minutes to go in the third quarter.
Oklahoma State responded midway through the fourth quarter when Spencer Sanders hit Tay Martin in an incredible pitch and catch. But Iowa State went 85 yards in six plays after that TD to retake the lead for good.
Sanders finished the game 15-of-24 passing for 225 yards and threw three touchdowns while Iowa State’s Brock Purdy was 27-of-33 for 307 yards and tossed two touchdowns. Both of those TD throws went to Xavier Hutchinson. He had 12 catches for 125 yards and also had a 51-yard TD nullified by a ridiculously bad taunting call after he mildly celebrated while running into the end zone.
The Big 12 is wide open
There are now four teams competing for two spots in the Big 12 championship game midway through the conference season. No. 3 Oklahoma moved to 5-0 in the Big 12 with a sloppy win over Kansas on Saturday and is the only undefeated team in the conference.
Behind the Sooners are Iowa State, Baylor and Oklahoma State. Each of those three teams has one loss and they are in a three-way tie after Baylor beat Iowa State and Oklahoma State beat Baylor.
All three of those teams still need to play Oklahoma too. The Sooners’ five conference wins have come against teams ranked No. 5 through 10 in the league and the schedule gets very tough in November. After an off week to start November, OU ends the season with a trip to Baylor, a home game against Iowa State, and a trip to Oklahoma State.
Whichever of those second-place teams that gets a win against OU will be in a prime position to make the title game. And if Oklahoma drops two of those games in the stretch run, then we could see two of Baylor, Iowa State and Oklahoma State in the title game.
That wouldn't be that bad of an outcome, either. Their three games against each other have been decided by a combined 15 points. While OU may seem like the favorite, the Big 12 may be the most wide-open Power Five conference.